Cultural Tours In Ethiopia

Ethiopia is one of the world's great crossroads, where the people and cultures of Africa, the Middle East, and the Mediterranean have been interacting for thousands of years. The resulting ethnic and cultural diversity has given rise to many unique and dynamic visual traditions. The country has thus been called a cultural mosaic, due to its 80 different languages and dialects and as many, if not more, cultural varieties.

The strong religious setting, celebrations, and festivals play an important part in everyone's daily life. Church ceremonies are a major feature of Ethiopian life. Above all, it is a country of great antiquities, cultures, and traditions stretching back 3000 years.

These cultural tours have been designed in a way to enable visitors to experience this amazing culture and history of one of the world's most ancient peoples and civilizations. Click on the links below for each tour for specific information.

    The Historic Route With Tigray Rock-Hewn Churches — 14 Days

    Discover the land that used to be one the greatest kingdoms of the world as you travel to the Historic Route of Ethiopia, Simien Mountains, and Tigray rock-hewn churches. This cultural tour combines some of the most ancient history and culture of Ethiopia and the breathtaking scenery of the Simien Mountains and Gheralta area. On this tour you will also have the chance to view some endemic wildlife in the Simien Mountains.

    Trip Highlights

    • Visit four UNESCO World Heritage Sites. 
    • Be amazed by a visit to the rock-hewn churches of Lalibela, one of "the living wonders of the world".
    • Enjoy the magnificent nature and endemic wilife of Simien Mountains.
    • Explore the less-visited Tigray rock-hewn churches.
    • Travel back in time to explore the  ancient city of Axum — the last resting place of the Ark of the Covenant. 
    • Discover the fairytale castles of Gondar.
    • Take a cruise on Lake Tana to visit the ancient island monasteries.
    • See the source of the mighty Blue Nile Rive and Blue Nile Falls.
    • Visit the vibrant city of Addis Ababa.
    • Meet your ancestor Lucy at the National Museum in Addis Ababa.
    • Try the varied Ethiopian food.
    • Attend an Ethiopian coffee ceremony.


    Day 1: Addis Ababa

    Arrive in Addis Ababa and take a tour of the city in the afternoon.

    Day 2: Addis Ababa, Bahirdar

    In the morning, we drive to Bahirdar through the Great Blue Nile Gorge.

    Day 3: Lake Tana, Blue Nile Falls, Bahir Dar

    In the morning, we visit the ancient island monasteries of Lake Tana. In the afternoon, we visit the Blue Nile Falls.

    Day 4: Bahir Dar, Gondar

    After breakfast, we drive to Gondar through the beautiful countryside scenery. In the afternoon, we visit the castle compound built from the 17th century and the Debre Berhan Selassie Church.

    Day 5: Gondar, Simien Mountains National Park

    After an early breakfast, we will drive to the Simien Mountains National Park. For the rest of the day, we will trek around the park.

    Day 6: Simien Mountains National Park, Axum

    After breakfast, we drive to Axum through the beautiful scenery of the Simien Mountains and the Tekeze River Gorge.

    Day 7: Axum, Yeha

    After breakfast, we visit the ancient city of Axum. In the afternoon, we will visit the pre-Christian temple of Yeha.

    Day 8: Axum, Hauzien

    In the morning, we drive to Hauzien, the center of some of the most ancient rock-hewn churches, through the stunning and historical mountainous town of Adwa.

    Day 9: Hauzien

    Today, we will explore the Tigray rock-hewn churches and the beautiful surrounding mountains of the area.

    Day 10: Hauzien, Mekele

    In the morning, we drive to Mekele visiting some of the most ancient Tigray rock-hewn churches including Wikro Cherkos, Abrha We-atsbeha, and Dugum Selassie enroute.
    Day 11: Mekele, Lalibela

    After breakfast, we drive north to Lalibela through Sekota. Enroute we will visit Yimrhane Kirstos and different villages of the Agwe tribal people.
    Day 12: Lalibela

    In the morning, we visit the first group of rock-hewn churches in Lalibela dating from 1200 AD. In the afternoon, we continue visiting the rock-hewn churches in the second group.
    Day 13: Lalibela, Asheten Mariam

    In the morning, we take a mule ride and trek to the top of Asheten Mariam Monastery.
    Day 14: Lalibela, Addis Ababa, Departure

    After breakfast, we transfer to Lalibela airport for the flight to Addis Ababa. For the rest of the day, we take a city tour of Addis Ababa that includes the National Museum, Ethnographic Museum, and Mercato, the largest open-air market in Africa.

    In the evening, we enjoy a traditional dinner with a live cultural dance show of the different tribes. At the end of the farewell dinner, transfer to Addis Ababa airport for the flight back. End of tour.


    Additional Info

    • Trip Type: Cultural Tour
    • TourCode: GHET-024
    • JourneyType: Private Journey
    • TourDuration: 14 Days
    • Activities/Description: Discover the land that used to be one the greatest kingdoms of the world. Enjoy breathtaking scenery and endemic wildlife. This is a guided private tour the Classic Historic Route of Ethiopia, Simien Mountains National Park, and the less-visited, but amazing Tigray rock-hewn churches.
    Grand Holidays Ethiopia Tours has been operating responsible travel activity and adventure holidays in Ethiopia for more than a decade.Travel to Ethiopia with Grand Holidays Ethiopia Tours and discover amazing Ethiopia. We have a wide selection of holiday tour packages including the following: cultural tours for groups and individuals, family holiday options, varied adventure tours and travel packages, photo expeditions, trekking adventure holidays, cultural explorations in the Omo Valley, and photo tours in Ethiopia. We are the local travel specialists and the leading Ethiopian tour operator based in Addis Ababa. Contact us for your holiday in Ethiopia.
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